The news can be pretty grim these days, and you might find it easier to digest in an animated format. CBS All Access announced this week that the new animated variety news series, “Tooning Out the News,” will launch on March 16th in the U.S. and Canada, exclusively on CBS All Access. You’ll be able to stream the premiere episode next week, so set a reminder to catch the first season.

The official description for the new series reads, “Tooning Out the News will feature a cast of animated characters, led by anchor James Smartwood, mocking the news of the day and interviewing real-world guests, newsmakers and analysts in daily five- to seven-minute segments, followed by a weekly full episode available every Friday.”

The series is executive produced by Stephen Colbert and Chris Licht of CBS’ “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” and RJ Fried and Tim Luecke from Showtime’s “Our Cartoon President.”

“After a successful negotiation between my forthright representation and a frankly insulting CBS business affairs department, I’m pleased to report that I am now the lead anchor and chief senior managing director of news and miscellaneous serious stuff at America’s #1 source for news and ‘Star Trek’: CBS All Access,” says Smartwood. “Now that I’m on the air, I have a stark warning to every power player in Washington: I will suck up to you for access – that’s a promise. Lastly, for the record, my involuntary sabbatical last year was my choice. Check out Tooning Out the News every weekday. I don’t work weekends. Weekends are for chili and roughhousing.”

The video streaming service also confirmed a few of the guests, which include Dan Abrams, Alan Dershowitz, Thomas Friedman, Nicholas Kristof, Rep. Barbara Lee, Olivia Nuzzi, Rep. Donna Shalala, and Rep. Eric Swalwell.

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